February 24, 2020
Members Present: Keith Squires, Cynthia Browning, Daniel Harvey, Tim Williams
Members Absent: Matthew Bykowski
Also Present: Jack McDonough-GNAT-TV, Stephanie Moffett-Hynds, Jean Freebern, Mary Ann Carlson – Energy Committee Members, Sherry Monte
The meeting was called to order at 7:02pm by Chairman, Keith Squires
Public Comments: Energy Audit: Several members of the Energy Committee were at the meeting to continue to discuss an energy audit for Town Hall. They said that Weatherization Works was willing to do an energy audit of Town Hall for free. Mr. Squires said he had already been in touch with the company, and had set up a date for them to come to town, Monday, March 16, 2020 at 11 AM. The Committee asked, and was granted, permission to observe the audit.
Minutes of the Meeting of Feb. 10, 2020: Mr. Williams made a motion to accept as presented, the minutes of the meeting of February 10, 2020. Ms. Browning seconded. Motion passed.
New Business: Town Building Repairs: Mr. Squires said there will be ads in the Banner and News Guide, to try to obtain a carpenter/handyman to do repairs at Town Hall and Town properties, as was discussed at the past meeting, and flyers have been hung up in Town as well. It was decided that the Board will except bids for needed roof repairs.
Solid Waste Alliance Meeting: It was discussed that there will be a Bennington County Solid Waste Alliance meeting at Town Hall on March 4, 2020, from 4-6 PM. Mr. Squires explained one of the topics that will be discussed is the option of creating a permanent Hazardous Waste facility that could be used year-round. The Alliance is considering renting or leasing the Casella owned property in Bennington.
Old Business: Town Administrator Ad Placement: The Board discussed where to place the ads for Town Administrator that would provide the most exposure and best results for the least amount of expense. After much discussion, it was decided that there would be a print ad in the Bennington Banner for the next 2 consecutive Saturday editions, as well as online through the Banner, which is included in the price for 30 days. It will also be posted on the Town’s website, the Vermont League of Cities and Towns, the VT Dept. of Labor-Vt Joblink, and the New Hampshire and Massachusetts Municipal Associations.
Habitat for Humanity Property Update: It was discussed that the proposed purchase of the Dietrich property by Habitat for Humanity is still in the hands of the lawyers and that there is a possible glitch that would need to be worked out.
Highways: Mr. Squires said the Highway Foreman is retiring in April. It was decided that the job would be posted internally first, with interested candidates needing to apply and go through the interview process, before the highway position would be advertised for the public.
Paving: Mr. Squires said there will need to be paving done on Warm Brook Road and Sandgate Road and he is waiting for proposals.
Bridge Repair: Mr. Squires spoke to the Board about bridges needing repairs in the near future. It was discussed that the West Arlington Covered Bridge will need between $14,000-$17,000 worth of repairs. Mr. Squires spoke of applying for a grant, but cautioned that applying for a grant for that small dollar amount could eliminate the Town from being allowed grant money for larger projects, and that there is leftover FEMA money that was dispersed for that bridge’s repair after Hurricane Irene that could be used now. The Board agreed to use the FEMA money. Bridge 13 in South Arlington on Black Hollow Road, will need replacing at some point, which could be between $75,000-80,000 and Mr. Squires is in hopes it will be one of the State projects they look for each year. He usually puts in for six to seven projects a year and typically gets approved for one. Bridge 4 on Hale Road needs to have the deck replaced. It’s already on the State list, and Mr. Squires asked Ms. Browning to inquire where on the State’s list it is currently listed.
Water Department: Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Warrant WD#4, from the Operating Account, in the amount of $3,399.76. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed.
Mr. Squires spoke of a service line that will be repaired when weather permits, across from the Daycare. He said Mr. Herrmann from Herrmann construction has been very informative of a procedure to freeze a section of the line, to eliminate the need to shut down the whole line for repairs. He also said a hydrant in East Arlington will be repaired, and that the hydrant by the Park has already been repaired.
Warrants and Orders: Mr. Harvey made a motion to approve Warrant #4, in the amount of $19,066.23, from the General Operation Account. Mr. Williams seconded. Motion passed. This amount includes Health Insurance premiums for $5400, Miles Fuel bills, and new PFOA free foam required for the Fire Department, after the old foam is not allowed to be used anymore due to PFOA contaminants.
All Other Business: Recycling: It was discussed that Casella has a new charge for their Zero-Sort facility in Rutland which doubles the Town’s bill, due to problems with the system with contaminated items and plastic bags being put into the Zero-Sort containers that can shut down their machinery. It was discussed that the public needs to be educated and perhaps monitored at the bin locations to prevent these problems. It was also mentioned that two recycling bins are now at Town Hall.
Executive Session: None
Mr. Williams made a motion to adjourn. Mr. Harvey seconded. Motion passed. Meeting adjourned at 8:15 PM
Janet Barry, Recording Secretary
Cc: files, Town Clerk